Treatment with grass allergen peptides improves symptoms of grass pollen-induced allergic rhinoconjunctivitis

Anne K. Ellis, Charles W. Frankish, Robyn E. O'Hehir, Kristen Armstrong, Lisa Steacy, Mark Larché, Roderick P. Hafner

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38 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Synthetic peptide immunoregulatory epitopes are a new class of immunotherapy to treat allergic rhinoconjunctivitis (ARC). Grass allergen peptides, comprising 7 synthetic T-cell epitopes derived from Cyn d 1, Lol p 5, Dac g 5, Hol l 5, and Phl p 5, is investigated for treatment of grass pollen-induced ARC. Objective: We sought to evaluate the efficacy, safety, and tolerability of intradermally administered grass allergen peptides. Methods: A multicenter, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study evaluated 3 regimens of grass allergen peptides versus placebo in patients with grass pollen-induced allergy (18-65 years). After a 4-day baseline challenge to rye grass in the environmental exposure unit (EEU), subjects were randomized to receive grass allergen peptides at 6 nmol at 2-week intervals for a total of 8 doses (8x6Q2W), grass allergen peptides at 12 nmol at 4-week intervals for a total of 4 doses (4x12Q4W), or grass allergen peptides at 12 nmol at 2-week intervals for a total of 8 doses (8x12Q2W) or placebo and treated before the grass pollen season. The primary efficacy end point was change from baseline in total rhinoconjunctivitis symptom score across days 2 to 4 of a 4-day posttreatment challenge (PTC) in the EEU after the grass pollen season. Secondary efficacy end points and safety were also assessed. Results: Two hundred eighty-two subjects were randomized. Significantly greater improvement (reduction of total rhinoconjunctivitis symptom score from baseline to PTC) occurred across days 2 to 4 with grass allergen peptide 8x6Q2W versus placebo (-5.4 vs -3.8, respectively; P = .0346). Greater improvement at PTC also occurred for grass allergen peptide 8x6Q2W versus placebo (P = .0403) in patients with more symptomatic ARC. No safety signals were detected. Conclusion: Grass allergen peptide 8x6Q2W significantly improved ARC symptoms after rye grass allergen challenge in an EEU with an acceptable safety profile.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)486-496
JournalJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2017


  • Allergen challenge
  • Allergen peptides
  • Allergic rhinitis
  • Allergic rhinoconjunctivitis
  • Allergy
  • Environmental exposure unit
  • Epitope
  • Grass
  • Immunotherapy
  • Synthetic peptide immunoregulatory epitope

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